Tuesday, January 25, 2022

NFIU rejects ISWAP funding report by ECOWAS body

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or www.facebook.com/ibrahim.ramalana, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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The Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, NFIU, rejected the report by the ECOWAS body, alleging that N18 billion I  Islamic State’s West Africa Province, SWAP, funds were laundered through Nigeria’s formal financial system as untrue.

The Inter-Governmental Action Group on Money Laundering in West Africa, GIABA, HAD ALLEGED that the ISWAP terror group HAD moved a whooping N18 billion annual revenue through the Nigerian financial system to fund its activities.

Reacting through a statement Monday by its Chief Media Analyst, Ahmed Dikko, the NFIU said the story is “totally outdated and was based on a 2019 country evaluation report which is literally stale and irrelevant today”.

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The statement added that Nigerians counter-terrorists financing efforts have practically moved forward since then.

“It is to the knowledge of the international community, our populace and the formal media organisations that several arrests were made through the ongoing Operation Service Wide approved by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Defence Intelligence Agency, DIA.

The exercise is continuing and far from over”.

In addition, all funding of violence from all sections of the country are being evidently analysed and reported to all relevant authorities according to law.

It’s true that recently Nigeria fell victim of illicit financial flows but overt and far-reaching efforts are being executed by the government to stem the bad practice.

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The ECOWAS body released its report to justify putting Nigeria’s Financial System under an enhanced review process alongside other countries in the Sahel.

“We had formally faulted the report to the ECOWAS body while agreeing to partner with them to carry out further review processes to jointly attain global best practices on all countermeasures against local and cross border violent crimes disturbing entire West Africa presently.

“All our neighbours have proofs of our exchange of terrorist financial intelligence with them real-time,” the statement said.

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